It feels as though summer has only just begun, and yet you’ve already seen the stores begin rolling out their Back to School specials. While the preoccupation seems to fall on finding the perfect statement backpack, it’s your child’s smile that leaves a lasting impression.

In addition to being an excellent start to a healthy school year, many schools require a dental exam upon admittance. Whether you’ve never missed a six-month checkup or if this is your child’s first visit, this can be the perfect opportunity to solidify excellent oral habits for your child! Read on for a few tips and thoughts on your student’s back-to-school smile!

Summer Sweets

Summer is our favorite season! Life slows down a little, and longer days make it a little easier to carve out more time for our families, fun, and creating forever memories.

So many of those sweet memories include super sweet treats like s’mores, popsicles, and sodas. The longer days also mean summer schedules are less strict than school days. Bedtime slips away, tooth brushing routines get lost in the shuffle, and little ones are more prone to the damaging effects of sugar.

We would like to go on record as being 100% pro-summer fun! All it takes to save those smiles is a little twist in the routine and a deep clean!

Insure your Bright Smile

 While many insurance companies only cover a checkup every six months, most will make exceptions for a back-to-school exam, as many schools require them. You can check with your insurance company if you’re concerned, and be sure to make contact at the school. Many accept a physical within four months of enrollment.

Be sure to call us up and get an appointment early, as this does tend to be a busy time of year and we want to make sure to make plenty of time for your family!

First Things First

If this happens to be your child’s first exam, let us know ahead of time! Not only will it mean making extra time for a very thorough cleaning, it will mean making a little extra time to help familiarize them with the office, the staff, and the procedures.

If your child is nervous or hesitant, be patient with them! We promise we will be, too. The older your child is at their first checkup, the more skeptical they are likely to be.

Sporting a Smile

If your student will be engaging in sports this school year, be sure to bring it up with us! We would love to talk with you about contact sports injuries, first aid for broken or lost teeth, and to fit your child with a sports mouth guard.

Tiny Teeth

If your little one is heading off to Pre-k, Kindergarten, or their first all-day day care, a checkup can cover a host of new topics! Most schools have policies against pacifiers and thumb sucking, so the tips we offered last month about When and How to Wean Your Child from a Pacifier may come in handy. Your child becomes much more susceptible to communicable diseases if they are sucking on a thumb, toys, or pacifiers that have been exposed to cold germs.

Back on Schedule

Taking steps to get your child back into the swing of things might already feel daunting. While getting them to brush before bed is easy enough during the school year when a solid bedtime routine is in place, the morning fire drill can be a different story.

When your student is trying to squeeze the last few minutes of sleep out of their snooze button, morning tooth brushing minutes are often the ones lost in the battle.

This can be a tricky balancing act. Studies show that standard students are simply not getting enough sleep. Those morning minutes mean the world to teens! However, they are also not eating well in the morning, which causes a lack of focus. Add in chronic tooth aches and your child is suddenly struggling in school.

Drastic measures may be called for.

Consider keeping extra tooth brushes and toothpaste by the kitchen sink. Your child can grab those last 5 minutes of sleep, and brush immediately after taking their breakfast dishes to the kitchen before grabbing their bag and flying out the door. As your child grows, the responsibility for getting enough sleep, eating a healthy breakfast, and balancing their studies will become more and more their own responsibility, but for now, make health and focus as easy as you can! There is all the time in the world for life to get harder, and it will.

We are excited for your child to learn and grow this school year! Give us a call so we can help you get the healthiest start possible. We can’t wait to see those healthy smiles!

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